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041: Sacred Work Rituals ...

Phil Powis
Phil Powis
9 min read
041: Sacred Work Rituals ...

Sometimes there are things going on in your life that make it easy to get distracted or maintain your focus, but you still have commitments and goals that you need to take action on.

Knowing that days like this will happen from time to time, it's a good idea to be mentally prepared for how you want to show up AND to have some tools at your disposal to help you still get things done.

Even when life feels overwhelming, its still possible to take small steps forward that will eventually build into larger accomplishments.

You just need to keep moving one step at a time.

The past few months I've found myself more easily distracted than what's typical for me, and so it led me to ask myself how could I stack the deck in my favor so I could stay committed to my vision for what we are creating here at Sacred Business.

The result is a tool that I'm calling "Sacred Work Rituals".

It's a process that is deeply inspired by and iterative of work originally created by Sebastian Marshall, and a cool organization that is no longer operating, called UltraWorking.

I took many of the concepts and tools that I learned about there over the past few years and adapted them to be more in line with the philosophies that we share here at Sacred Business Flow...

So what does it mean to have a Sacred Work Ritual?

It's a method of managing blocks of time with a high level of connection, focus, and awareness so that you can make progress towards your goals in small, achievable doses.

For me, that means striving for approximately 6 25-minute sessions, each followed by a 5-minute break.

In Ultraworking terminology, these work blocks are referred to as "cycles".

To be clear, I don't use this tool everyday.

If my inspiration, energy, and creativity are high, I generally experience a natural level of flow that allows me to move through my day accomplishing tasks with ease.

But not every day is like that, and when I find myself experiencing resistance where there is a critical decision to be made between taking any meaningful action forward vs spending the day on the couch watching Netflix, this tool can be extremely helpful in allowing me to move through that resistance and still get some good work done.

Sacred Work Ritual Details

Let's look a bit more closely at how you can use this tool to set up your Sacred Work Ritual for the day (and you can click here to get the Sacred Work Rituals template):

Each session starts with a preparation phase. For me, I typically have ONE session in any given day, and again I ONLY use this tool if I'm facing low energy or a high level of resistance.

You could use it every day, but I find that degree of structure unnecessary on days when I'm feeling naturally inspired and creative.

The preparation phase has you asking important questions about what will make the work session effective. It also makes sure you are very clear and intentional about how long you plan to work, and what you would like to get done in the allotted amount of time.

Each session starts with the preparation phase. This phase provides the overarching strategy for your entire work session and afterwards provides a clear benchmark to determine whether you achieved what you intended.

You are asked the following questions:

  • What are you being guided to focus on today? (we suggest the business entity meditation if you are unclear).
  • Why is this important to the support of your Sacred Business?
  • How will I know this is complete?
  • Any risks / things that might get in the way? Potential distractions, procrastination, etc.
  • Is this concrete / measurable or subjective / undefined?
  • Anything else you feel called to reflect on before you begin your Sacred Work?

Once you know the big picture for your day and how much time you intend to spend in Sacred Work, you can move on to planning your first Sacred Work Cycle:

  • What will you get done in the next 25 minutes? Using this tool can also help you get much more in tune and realistic about what you can get done in a work cycle, and by virtue of that, your entire work day. This is another benefit of working with the tool.
  • Be clear on how you will get started so that when your timer begins, you don't get distracted by having to decide where to focus your energy and attention.
  • Identify if there are any distractions that might derail your progress so you can preemptively plan for how to stay on track.
  • How would you rate your energy and connection with your higher self, or the divine? This can be helpful to understand so you can think about what behaviors might support better work (better sleep, taking a break for a quick 20-minute meditation to tune in, etc.)

Once you have completed your plan for the cycle, start a timer, and devote yourself fully to your Sacred Work!

When your timer goes off at the end of the Work Cycle, take a nice break for 5-10 minutes of downtime to let yourself rest.

Next, the review questions will lead you through some questions about the work cycle you have just completed. This is your opportunity to reflect and think about what's working well, and where you might still be hitting resistance. Over time, this process can really lead to a deeper understanding of your work patterns, which could result in improved productivity and creative output

  • Did you complete your Sacred Work Cycle targets?
  • Was there anything worth taking pause about and reflecting further?
  • Did you get distracted by anything?
  • Is there anything you could do to improve as you move into your next Sacred Work Cycle?

Towards the end of your break, you take a few quick moments to plan the next Sacred Work Cycle. The debrief and planning usually take the initial 60-90 seconds of the 10 minute break.

For the remainder of your break, I recommend making sure to get up from your desk, take at least three deep breaths, and then move your body a bit. Maybe take a quick stretch, or have a snack.

At the end of all your planned Sacred Work Cycles, you will reflect on all of your cycles and what you have accomplished:

  • What did you get done in the allotted amount of time you had?
  • How did your productivity compare to a "normal" day. What went well, and where could you bring more awareness?
  • Did you do what was put in front of you with all of your heart and soul, or did you lose connection with the Sacred? (my favorite question)
  • How can you stay connected to the idea that this work has been given to you by the universe, and that it is your unique calling in this moment?
  • Any other reflections, insights, or lessons to share with others? (The last part of this question can be great if you are a creator yourself as a way of gathering relevant content ideas).

That's it! Its a surprisingly simply process, but one that will bring you a ton of insights if you allow yourself to embrace it fully, even if just for a few of your work days.

Here are a few lessons I've learned through integrating this tool into my personal work days:

  • When I first began using the tool, I noticed how often my big picture goals were not clearly enough articulated to where I could measure the success of what I was taking on. I also found myself trying to take on way too much in any given work cycle, and would experience frustration around this. But as I began to get more in tune with my work cycles, I was able to more accurately predict what I could get done in any given day (whether I was using the tool or not).
  • The reflections I would have at the end of a full work ritual of multiple cycles often times would illuminate gaps or holes in my thinking about what was necessary to move a project or big goal to completion. I would find myself making lists of things that were not accounted for that would still need to get done, so I could plan them into my future work cycles. This has led to more complete and realistic thinking about what it takes to achieve a goal.
  • Having a well defined daily and weekly plan ahead of starting to plan your work rituals makes this process way smoother (More on our planning methods in another post). You could choose to spend your first cycle planning so you can be clear on your future cycles, but if you come into the session with a well defined plan, its very easy to get right into the work! And i've found the faster you get the dopamine hit of that first accomplishment being behind you in your day, the more easy it is to stay the course and keep hitting your goals for the day!
  • A 25-minute Sacred Work Cycle goes really FAST, and it's amazing how much you can get done in a single cycle if you are clear on your objectives in a way that is discrete and measurable. This is an extremely effective way of knocking a ton of administrative tasks off your list that you just seem like you are never getting to. Even if your focus, inspiration, and creative levels are high, you could just use this tool to do those little tasks that feel soul-sucking to you. It feels great to see things falling off your task list with ease!

In summary, if you need a little bit of extra help getting your Sacred Work done this coming week, give the tool a try and let me know what you think! Access the template here.

And if you haven't checked out these additional resources, I encourage you to:

Happenings

Carolina and I just finished an engagement with the founder of Sacred Self Yoga School, Luana Fara. It was such an honor and joy to support her in the launch of her 3-year advanced teacher training!

Here's a few things she had to share about our experience in the Be The Flow Coaching program:

Who We Are Celebrating:

Dani Oxer and Kelly Ehret

I recently got the opportunity to meet these two beautiful souls in person here in Costa Rica! Dani and Kelly have been part of our Radiant Flow Weekly Practice Group for almost the last two years, and it was so cool to connect with them "in the real".

It was such a nice experience for me, and I am very grateful to have gotten to know them a bit more during their time here in Costa Rica.

Hiking with Dani and Kelly in El Rodeo, Costa Rica

Here is What I Want to Share This Week:

The Sacred Rebels Oracle Deck

(link)

I recently picked up this deck, and it's very much aligned with our message that we share here each week about Sacred Business.

There is a soothing quality to these cards that can be helpful if you are experiencing any sort of doubt or anxiety about your path.

I'm a big fan of Alana Fairchild, as she is also the creator of the Rumi deck that we often use in our business.

What do you really want to experience in your life? (link)

What is it next in your evolution? Light a candle, do a little ritual and detach from the answer. We are so used to getting all the answers in one click that we think that life is just like that.

But life is a mystery to be revealed.

So ask the question with all the sincerity you have in your heart.

Check it out here!

Memorable Quote:

newsletter

Phil Powis

Co-Founder & Chief Strategist, Sacred Business Flow


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